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Smaller carbon footprint fits Boots

Retailer Boots is one of a number of U.K. companies proactive on sustainability for its packaged products.

The pharmacy chain has recently addressed Christmas excess for 2008 with a strategy to reduce the overall amount of gift packaging used. It also plans to make recycling easier for the consumer and promote reusable containers. All Christmas 2007 gifts were reviewed with these aims in mind.

For example, Boots’ Botanics Essential gift-set packaging has been changed from a large rigid box, thermoforms, and printed card insert plus a shrink-sleeve wrap to a reusable tin with a printed card sleeve with 80% recycled content. The tin is designed to hold all contents securely, thus eliminating the need for additional packaging to keep the products in place. The 2008 set uses a fraction of the packaging of the 2007 set, even though the contents remain the same. The total weight has been cut from 478 grams to 23 grams, generating a savings of about one pound of packaging per unit. Also, all elements can be easily recycled. The environmental impact of transit packaging and transportation has also been reduced due to the pack’s smaller footprint and weight.

Boots is now implementing similar changes across a wide range of gift packs, achieving typical savings of five tons of packaging yearly per product line

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